There likewise I beheld Excalibur
Before him at his crowning borne, the sword
That rose from out the bosom of the lake,
And Arthur rowed across and took it — rich
With jewels, elfin Urim, on the hilt,
Bewildering heart and eye — the blade so bright
That men are blinded by it — on one side,
Graven in the oldest tongue of all this world,
“Take me,” but turn the blade and ye shall see,
And written in the speech ye speak yourself,
“Cast me away!” And sad was Arthur’s face
Taking it, but old Merlin counselled him,
“Take thou and strike! the time to cast away
Is yet far-off.” So this great brand the king
Took, and by this will beat his foemen down.

Alfred, Lord Tennyson (1809-1892) English poet
Idylls of the King, “The Coming of Arthur” (1859-1885)

Full text.

Added on 23-Sep-10 | Last updated 23-Sep-10
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